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Harlequin Dancing: C.809-1928

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


Harlequin Dancing


Pottery: Unidentified Staffordshire Pottery




White salt-glazed stoneware figure of Harlequin dancing

Off-white salt-glazed stoneware. The figure is supported on a low dome-shaped mound base with a tree stump at the back. Harlequin wears a broad-brimmed conical hat with a bow on one side, a tunic with a large frill round the neck and smaller frills round the cuffs, a small cloak falling from his left shoulder, striped breeches, and shoes with bows on top. He stands on his right leg and has his left leg raised and bent at the knee. His right arm is raised and he holds a baton in his left hand which hangs the stump.


History note: Fransella & Moss, 29 Gerrard Street, London from whom bought on 29 March 1926 for £62 by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 11.3 cm

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1928-12-07) by Glaisher, J. W. L., Dr


18th Century, Mid
George II
Production date: circa AD 1755


This figure was derived from a Meissen porcelain model by Peter Reinicke which was one of a set of Italian Comedy figures for Johann Adolph II, Duke of Weissenfels. Ten figures made in 1743-4 were based on engravings by Joullain to illustrate Riccoboni's 'Histoire du théatre italien', Paris, 1729. The Dancing Harlequin may have been modelled by Reinicke in 1747, and its pose appears to be adaptation of an engraving by Berain of the actor Henri Dumoulin titled 'Du Moulin en habit de Paysan'. A rare Longton Hall porcelain Harlequin might have been the immediate model for the Staffordshire white salt-glazed stoneware version.

School or Style


People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Surface composed of salt-glaze

Materials used in production

off-white Stoneware

Techniques used in production

Press-moulding : White stoneware, press-moulded and salt-glazed

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.809-1928
Primary reference Number: 76132
Old object number: 4836
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 17 January 2023 Last processed: Friday 8 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Harlequin Dancing" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-21 03:31:14

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{{cite web|url= |title=Harlequin Dancing |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-06-21 03:31:14|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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